I, like most people, am a woman with many hats and responsibilities, and even though I am only a substitute teacher, I greatly struggle at juggling them all. So, I am very much looking forward to the summer when I can work on things I need to work on without work getting in the way of productive and energetic work. And here are seven things I am going to work on (with one that is not work at all) that make me so excited for the next two weeks to be over and for summer to begin.
1. Working on Sleep. Precious, precious sleep.
This may be self-explanatory, but I find myself stuck in this tug-of-war between what my body deems necessary (sleep… precious, precious sleep) and what my spirit deems necessary. You may say, “Go to bed earlier.” And you know, in an ideal world where I can be secluded from everyone and have no other relationships to maintain and invest in other than mine and God’s, that might be easier to do, but the fact is, I will probably always struggle with this because I love my husband. In my ideal world, I would wake up early to work out and do my devos, but if I were to go to bed early enough to get all that accomplished before work, then I would be going to bed as he is getting home, and I would have like zero time with him. I’m not ok with that. So, I am stuck trying to find that balance between taking care of me: body, soul, and spirit, and maintaining relationship with my best friend. But I also need to put away my idea of “ideal” and start figuring out how to make the best of my 6 am to 10 pm day and quit blaming other things for my lack of self-discipline.
2. Working on My Personal Bible Study Time.
I have gotten better the last couple weeks, but if I am honest, my time with God gets very dry and rigid very easily. I want to work on that. I want to be able to wake up refreshed, have some quick bible reading and worship, go to the gym to really wake up, come home and have some time of real worship and prayer, pressing into the throne room, asking for revelation, praying what He leads me to pray, learning a deeper side of who He is. In a lot of ways, I feel like I treat God like a long-distant relationship that I catch up with on the phone every once in a while. It is as if somewhere our communication with each other is getting lost in the mail, yet I know He is right here with me. I don’t want a long-distant experiential relationship with my Lord. I want to have a deep, intimate, close friendship with Him, and I know He want it, too. And don’t get me wrong, there is a definite level of deep intimacy with God, but I want deeper. I want Him to invade all of me. Everyday.
3. Working on My Health.
I’m 289 pounds of food-loving obesity. That needs to change. It takes time. I have not gone to the gym, and I have not necessarily been eating healthy. Something has to give, and I need to start figuring out what. I was told by a close friend that it took her two years to love running and working out. That scares me. Why can’t it be instantaneous? Perhaps I need to start treating it like I do things in the spirit realm. Perhaps instead of fretting, stressing, hating on the things that make the health journey difficult I need to start declaring that I love it, that it makes me stronger, that it makes me feel better. Ultimately, I know those things are and will be true, but I have to invest the time and discipline. God has given me lots of wonderful ambitions to do in my life, and I need to get healthy if I think I’m going to achieve them. He has equipped me with the body, and I need to make sure it is ready. It isn’t yet.
4. Working on Writing Curriculum and Other Planning for Children’s Church.
I have been coping with this responsibility. Straight up. I have lots of ideas and lots of plans in my head, but without writing them down and beginning to act on it, I can’t expect my kids to flourish. If they do not grow under my teaching, that is on me. I am not ok with them staying where they are no more than I am okay with me staying the way I am. I want to challenge them, I want to teach them, I want to build a godly relationship with them, and I want them to all become the amazing men of God that I know God wants them to be. I may not have a classroom of 30 kids to pour into, but I do have these four boys, and I need to focus on doing well with what God has already placed in front of me. That means I need to write the curriculum I am doing for the next few months as well as get the behavioral checks and balance in place (We are working on some positive reinforcement, incentives, and things of that nature). You may be seeing a recurring theme of time, but it is so true. I have a ton of work to do every week, and I feel like I barely get it done.
5. Working on Maintaining My Home.
I’m pretty sure this doesn’t need any commentary. My home falls apart… often. I want to work on that self-discipline of doing what I hate because the outcome is what I love. My goal is to clean for just 30 minutes every day. Power clean for 30 minutes, surely I can do that!
6. Working for NISE
NISE is an organization I work for that hosts Chinese students here in Colorado Springs and teaches them about American customs, giving them an opportunity to practice speaking English. It is wonderful, and I have loved doing it the last two years. Each year, my responsibilities have increased, but I am so thankful to be a part of this organization that I love and get paid for it. And pretty soon, we will be really cracking down on the logistics and planning, my favorite! There is a lot yet to do in preparation for the students and a lot yet to do while they are here, but hopefully my co-teacher and I will have been able to invest the time leading up to their arrival to make our time with them as fun and stress-free as possible.
7. (Not) Working at Comic Con
And the best for last, my husband and I are going to Denver Comic Con for our anniversary. It will be three days of pure nerdy goodness as we go to forums, meet celebrities, and just hang out with each other and invest in an experience with each other. That is what we try to always do, invest our time and money in experiences with each other. Meeting Alex Kingston won’t be too bad either.
What will you be working on this summer?